MANILA, Philippines -- (UPDATE) Kia Bright came through in the clutch to lift BanKo Perlas to a hard-earned victory over Motolite in the 2019 Premier Volleyball League (PVL) Reinforced Conference on Wednesday at the FilOil Flying V Centre in San Juan.
The Perlas Spikers gutted out the win in three extended sets, 26-24, 32-30, 26-24, to improve to 2-2 in the conference.
Bright was tremendous, coming up with the winning hits in the second and third sets that finally put Motolite away.
"I'm proud of us for hanging in there during those tough times," said Bright after the game.
"'Yung kapit talaga (andoon), especially sa second set. It's good training, not just physically but also mentally for us," added BanKo captain Nicole Tiamzon.
The first set served as a preview of how the match would play out, as BanKo reached set point, 24-22, only for Motolite to knot the count off a service error by Yas Yildirim and a block by Channon Thompson on Tiamzon.
But Tiamzon recovered with back-to-back kills to give the Perlas Spikers the win the opening frame.
The second set proved even tougher. Again, it was BanKo that reached set point first, 24-21, but a service error by Kathy Bersola, a violation by Sue Roces, and a huge hit by Motolite's Isa Molde forced a deuce.
From there, it was a back-and-forth contest as neither team showed signs of giving in. Motolite reached set point three times, the last at 29-28 after Thompson's massive crosscourt kill. But setter Ayel Estranero was called for a violation in the next rally, and Bright uncorked a clutch hit for a 30-29 count.
Thompson's off-the-block attack tied it for the last time at 30, before Bright scored back-to-back points for the win in Set 2.
"Walang bibitaw," said Tiamzon of her message to her teammates during the tight set.
The Perlas Spikers again showed better composure in the third frame, reaching set point 24-23 off a net touch by new Motolite import Krystle Esdelle. Molde forced an extension, 24-all, but Motolite again had no answers for Bright who put up two straight kills to lift her team to victory.
Bright finished with 20 points, while Yildirim (11), Bersola (11), and Tiamzon (10) all reached double-digits for BanKo.
Molde had 16 points and 9 digs, while Thompson had 10 points and 10 receptions for Motolite. Esdelle put up 12 points in her debut.
Motolite dropped to 0-3 in the conference.
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